Can Dogs Have Honey? Everything You Need to Know

Humans have been consuming honey for thousands of centuries. But can dogs enjoy it too? Can they enjoy the vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K, along with minerals such as zinc, iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, and copper that it possesses? Do honey’s antifungal, antibacterial, antioxidant, and antimicrobial properties benefit dogs?

In this blog, we will explore this topic and provide you with all the information you need to know about honey for dogs.

Is Honey Safe for Dogs?

Short answer, yes. Honey is safe for dogs, and they can enjoy it in regulated quantities. Unlike other human foods, which are too fatty for dogs to digest, honey is rich in natural sugars, vitamins, and minerals which are essential for health and wellness.

Most dogs can enjoy honey. However, if your dog is a puppy (6 months – 1 year, depending on the breed), it is advisable not to feed them raw honey, as it may contain botulism spores which can lead to gastrointestinal issues. It’s also not advisable to feed diabetic dogs honey, as it can raise their blood sugar levels.

Benefits of Honey for Dogs

Honey is made up of vitamins and minerals which contribute to its benefits as listed below:

Antioxidants

Honey contains vitamins A, C, and E, among other flavonoids and phenolic acids, which give it potent antioxidant properties. They help fight free radicals that cause oxidative stress in your dog’s body. They are also helpful in reducing inflammation, which helps improve the immune system.

B-complex vitamins

These vitamins are responsible for supporting your dog’s energy levels, brain function, and metabolism.

Vitamin D & Vitamin E

Both of these vitamins support bone health, regulate the immune system and support blood clotting functions.

Minerals like magnesium, manganese, and copper

These are essential in supporting the production of red blood cells and collagen. They also promote healthy bone density and muscle development.

Antimicrobial properties

Honey has strong antibacterial properties, which may help improve your dog’s gut microbiota. It helps balance the gut bacterial composition, which can significantly improve the gastrointestinal system.

Anti-inflammatory properties

Honey can help older dogs by reducing joint pain. It can also benefit dogs experiencing inflammation due to hot spots or bug bites.

Allergy Relief

Honey contains trace amounts of bee pollen. Bee pollen is known to have antiallergic effects and can help build resistance to seasonal allergies by reducing the production of histamine.

Wound care

Honey is indispensable in wound care and can be applied to minor burns, infections, hot spots, and pressure sores. It has antibacterial properties, which help keep wounds bacteria-free. It also forms a protective layer and seals wounds as it is thick and impermeable. Additionally, it helps pull edema out of the tissues, which helps clean the wound and eliminate odor.

Energy Boost

Due to the high sugar content, honey is beneficial as an energy booster, especially for athletic dogs. The natural sugars in honey break down slowly compared to processed sugars leading to a steady increase in energy over a more extended period.

Can Dogs Eat Manuka Honey?

Manuka honey is a special type of produced by bees that forage the New Zealand Manuka tree. Manuka honey contains a special compound known as methylglyoxal which correlates to its unique antibacterial properties. Compared to other types of honey, Manuka honey has the highest antibacterial activity.

This makes it a great choice for your dog, especially if they are experiencing a kennel cough. Manuka honey can soothe their throat and help relieve their cough, which can be caused by one or more cough-inducing viral and bacterial pathogens. It is also great for other applications, such as topical wound care applications.

See what customers who feed their dogs Manuka honey are saying.

How Much Honey Can You Feed Your Dog?

When it comes to feeding your dog honey, always consider its size. Generally, less is more for smaller breeds. Here is a more definitive guide that you can use to determine how much honey to feed your dogs per day.

Recommended honey consumption guidelines:

  • Small dogs (under 10 lbs): ¼ teaspoon/day
  • Medium dogs (10-20 lbs): ½ teaspoon/day
  • Larger dogs (20-50 lbs): 1 teaspoon/day
  • Large-breed dogs (over 50 lbs): 2 teaspoons/day

If you are still unsure how much honey to feed your dog, consult your veterinarian. Also, if your dog has any health condition, like diabetes, it is best to consult your veterinarian first.

Creative Ways to Feed Honey to Your Dog

There are many ways you can use to feed honey to your dog, including:

  • Allowing your dog to eat it off the spoon.
  • Applying it on dog treats.
  • Adding a teaspoon to fruit and vegetable smoothies.
  • Preparing treats using honey. Discover amazing home-baked dog treats that use honey.

When Not to Give Your Dog Honey

While honey contains numerous benefits and is safe for your dogs, there are instances where you should observe caution when feeding honey to your dog.

  • If your dog is a puppy. Puppy’s immune systems are not fully developed, and feeding them raw honey can put them at risk of botulism spores which may be present in raw honey. This can lead to gastrointestinal issues, among other conditions.

  • If your dog is diabetic. Diabetic dogs should not be fed honey as it contains high sugar content and can raise their blood sugar to extreme levels.

  • If your dog is overweight. Obese dogs can be negatively affected by the extra sugar honey contains.

Conclusion

Honey is a delicious and nutritious natural sweetener that you and your pooch can use. From its antibacterial properties and wound-healing abilities to its potential to soothe coughs and improve digestion, honey is a great snack that your dog will enjoy.

Whether you use it in a treat or spread it on fruit, honey can be a tasty and healthy addition to your dog’s diet. So, indulge your dog in this sweet treat, and your fur baby will thank you for it!

However, take care not to give your dog too much honey. It may lead to elevated blood sugar levels, vomiting, diarrhea, or loss of appetite. In case you see any of these symptoms, talk to your veterinarian.

Looking for where to buy Manuka honey for your dogs? Look no further. At Bees & Trees, we produce high-quality, authentic New Zealand Manuka honey, which we harvest in small batches to ensure high quality, minimally process, and then pack. Get some for your pooch today.

FAQ

Can honey negatively affect dogs?

Honey has many benefits, but when consumed in unchecked quantities, it can lead to obesity in dogs. Also, depending on the type of honey, it may potentially lead to tooth decay. Therefore, remember to provide adequate exercise to your dogs to avoid obesity and brush their teeth when you feed them non-manuka honey to avoid tooth decay.

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